SKY at Blue Ridge Brewing

Yo, check it.

One of my favorite places (Greenville's only brewpub) has opened an upscale restaurant right next door called Sky. I can vouch for the carbonara and the pan roasted guinea hen, as well as for the nice atmosphere and great service.

Distance from downtown Greenville: 0 miles.

View Larger Map


One of the largest folk festivals in the country takes place this weekend in Wilksboro, NC. One of the performers, the Lovell Sisters, has just released a new album. Listen to it for free here.

Other performers include, Doc Watson, The Duhks, Emmylou Harris, Linda Ronstadt and many more.

Distance from downtown Greenville: 183 miles.

View Larger Map

Myrtle Beach Wildfire Map

View North Myrtle Beach wildfire in a larger map

Burning the Future: Coal in America

Screening this week at the Charleston International Film Festival.

Distance from downtown Greenville: 212 miles.

View Larger Map

Zambra Wine and Tapas

Great atmosphere. Great food. Huge wine menu. Enough said.


Distance from downtown Greenville: 63 miles

View Larger Map

Tea Party Aftermath

I've seen some strange things. (Like this, and this and this). About 15 years ago I went to Dragoncon in Atlanta, where I saw people dressed as every comic book, Star Trek and Star Wars character imaginable. I even saw a woman walking her boyfriend on a leash. Until today, that was the weirdest collection of oddballs I'd ever encountered in one place. But tonight the Bi-Lo Center was ground zero for every anti-government ideologue within driving distance.

There were Confederate flags, "Don't Tread on Me" flags, American flags turned upside down (violating Flag code 176(a)), guys with tea bags taped to their straw hats, t-shirts with the slogan "White Power", toddlers with signs taped to them denouncing the IRS, people dressed as colonists, others dressed as Arabs, and lots and lots of anti-Obama signs. I'm sure the lack of African-Americans in the crowd was pure coincidence. One radio talk show host, Dr. Tony Beam violated US Flag Code 176(d) while welcoming his "fellow extremists."

There seemed to be no clear consistent message among the crowd. Some wanted to abolish the IRS. Some wanted to secede from the union. Others wanted a government based on the Bible. One guy had a sign referencing Ayn Rand's atheistic/libertarian tome Atlas Shrugged. Most seemed to really hate Obama and taxes, despite the fact that Obama just gave most of them a tax cut. One sign stated "Capitalism Works" which is somewhat debatable given how many private businesses are failing, but it was certainly working at the rally. These folks who felt their taxes are too high seemed to have no problem paying five bucks for parking, four bucks for a Coke and three bucks for a bottle of water.

For the first half of the rally, the audio was very poor, which one speaker blamed on - you guessed it - taxes. Seriously.

Representative Gresham Barrett, spoke passionately to his base, who booed him so loudly little could be heard (which seems oddly out of character for a group whom Gov. Sanford referred to as a "silent majority"). Despite his status as the second most conservative member of Congress in the country, the crowd found him too liberal for their tastes. When Governor Sanford spoke, he mentioned that he told his kids that they were going to Greenville to see some "patriots." Apparently there aren't any between here and Columbia but he was happy to have found them amongst this crowd.

The following is the Cliffs Notes version of every speech made at the rally.

Speaker: Do you love freedom.
Crowd: Yeah!
Speaker: Do you love liberty?
Crowd: Yeah!
Speaker: Do you hate taxes?
Crowd: Yeah!
Speaker: Do you hate government?
Crowd: Yeah!
Speaker: Do you hate terrorrists, child abusers, and fire ants?
Crowd: Yeah!
Speaker: Do you love baseball, apple pie and your mamma?
Crowd: Yeah!
Speaker: Founding fathers....Valley Forge....Apostle Paul....George Washington....Constitution.....Guns, Abortion, Guns, Abortion, Liberty...Freedom!!!!!
Crowd: Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!Yeah! Yeah!Yeah! Yeah!Yeah! Yeah!

Several years ago I was an audience member at the filming of an episode of Two and a Half Men. Between takes, while the cameras were being moved, a comedian entertained us, and production assistants came around constantly offering us chocolate and soft drinks. They wanted to keep us excited and hyped up on caffeine and sugar between takes so that when the cameras were rolling we were laughing to create a good live laugh track. There were similiar cues today. One speaker quoted Patrick Henry but when he got to the last line he began speaking in a quick halting manner..."Give! Me! Liberty! Or! Give! Me! Death!," and the crowd went wild.

On the walk home I realized I needed a reboot, a defrag or in Macintosh terms, I needed to reset the p-ram. Fortunately, a short stop at Smiley's did the trick.

Greenville Tea Party Part Deux - Update

UPDATE: The Greenville County Democratic Party will also be holding a "Save our Schools" rally at the same time and same location as the tea party. Between the two events, speakers include gubernatorial candidate Congressman Gresham Barrett (who was for the bailout before he was against it), Congressman Jim Demint, SC Senator Ralph Anderson, SC Representative Karl Allen, SC Representative Chandra Dillard, SC Representative Jerry Govan, Former US Congresswoman Liz Patterson, 2008 Democratic Candidate for US Congress Paul Corden, Greenville County School Board Trustee Leola Robinson-Simpson, Greenville County School Board Trustee Glenda Morrison-Fair, Greenville County Councilwoman Judy Gilstrap, Greenville County Councilwoman Lottie Gibson, Greenville County Councilwoman Xanthene Norris, Greenville City Councilwoman Lillian Brock-Flemming, Greenville City Councilwoman Diane Smock, Greenville City Councilwoman Jil Littlejohn.

Greenville hasn't seen this much political activity since Jesse Jackson and Kwesi MFume lead a group of protesters down Church Street to protest Greenville County's lack of recognition of Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Original Post

On December 16th, 1773 colonists in Boston, MA dumped three shiploads of tea into the Boston harbor to protest taxation without representation helping to spark the American Revolution.

This past February a few locals gathered outside Starbucks on Main Street to dump a couple boxes of tea into the Reedy River in protest of tax cuts voted on by their representatives, sparking minor attention in the blogosphere.

In case you missed the first Greenville Tea Party, the sequel opens this weekend at the Bi-Lo Center.

From the Upstate Young Republican website:

The outdoor terrace at Greenville‘s Bilo Center will play host to the Upstate Young Republicans post-tax day Tea Party Protest on Friday night April 17th at 6:00 PM. The overwhelming success of February’s Tea Party that turned out nearly 2000 people made it necessary to move the event to private property. “Success sometimes breeds its own challenges,” said Carl Clegg, of the Upstate Young Republicans, “but these are the challenges that we like to face head-on and with the amazing support and financial contributions of Greenville’s conservatives, we will again unite the voices of thousands and say loudly ‘…government is the problem!’”

Apparently when less than 1% of the population attends an event in the Upstate it's considered an "overwhelming success."

Distance from downtown Greenville: 0 miles.

View Larger Map

63rd Running of the Block House Steeplechase

Saturday APRIL 18, 2009
Sponsored by the Tryon Riding & Hunt Club
Held at the FENCE in Tryon, North Carolina

Distance from downtown Greenville: 45 miles.

View Larger Map

Coastal Expeditions

Coastal Expeditions offers kayak rentals in Folly Beach, Mount Pleasant and Isle of Palms, SC. They also offer guided tours through the intercostal waterway and the Edisto River where you can stay in a treehouse overnight.

We had three dolphins swimming around our kayaks for about ten minutes on our most recent trip.

They also offer a ferry to Bull Island, home of the nation's highest concentration of alligators.

Distance from downtown Greenville: 222 miles

View Larger Map

Indie Grits Film Festival

The Indie Grits Film Festival will be returning to Columbia April 15th-19th. The films are screened at the Nickelodeon Theatre.

Distance from downtown Greenville: 104 miles

View Larger Map

Hospital Rock and Falls Creek Falls

Hospital Rock is a large cave located in the Mountain Bridge Wilderness area. It's accessible most quickly via the Hospital Rock trail at Jones Gap State Park. Getting to the cave requires a very strenuous 1.1 mile hike in. This is labelled as one of the "most strenuous and rugged" trails in the state. As Kimberli stated on her blog recently, there's a reason they call it Hospital Rock. The trip up is a doozy. (I had another name for it most of the way but this is a family friendly site.)

According to the SC trails website the cave was used as a hideout for confederate deserters.

A month or so ago, someone left a campfire burning nearby and damn near burned the place down. Story

After reaching Hospital Rock, should you have a masochistic streak, you can continue on the Hospital Rock trail another 3.3 miles to Falls Creek Falls. The mile after the cave is worse than the first. Whoever built it was apparently not a huge fan of switchbacks. I guess if you're running from the Confederate army you'd want the shortest path. During this section you may spend a lot of time in existential introspection examining why you would choose to do this to yourself, realizing why your wife never hikes with you anymore and determining that if you ever make it out alive, you're starting a new hobby. Macramé perhaps. But then, right at the 2 mile mark the trail levels out as you begin to walk near the ridge. It stays that way 3/4 of a mile or so then starts getting a little hairy for another mile before descending sharply (very sharply) and then running along a beautiful stream before reaching the falls.

If you really hate life (or the people you brought with you) turn around and go back. Otherwise continue on the Falls Creek Falls trail (which is mostly down hill) to the Palmetto Bible Camp then walk three miles up the road back to your car. Or you could always just park at the Bible camp and walk the 1.4 miles to the falls and back.

Distance from downtown Greenville: 25 miles.

View Larger Map

Official Blog Name Change

The city of Greenville is apparently upset with my using the word Greenville in my blog "without proper licensing to use said title." The city has threatened to withhold from me my portion of the stimulus package targeted for Greenville bloggers unless I pay the licensing fee. Instead I've decided to change the name to A Day's Drive from 'Round Here. The new address will be (All of which are soon to owned by Google.) All references to Greenville in previous posts will be replaced by this symbol , (assuming the color laudable lime green does not also threaten legal action).